Some political analysts have predicted for months the 2020 election will ultimately be litigated in the courts. But in many ways, that is already happening. One month before Election Day, hundreds of lawsuits related to voting and the election have been filed across the country.
Much of that legal action has been here in Texas. The state sued Harris County Clerk Chris Hollins for trying to send out mail-in ballot applications to all registered voters in the county. And last week, the state successfully turned back a lawsuit from Texas Democrats that sought to reinstitute straight-ticket voting for this year's election. Then there are two lawsuits against Gov. Greg Abbott---Republicans sued him over expanding early voting, while civil rights groups sued Abbott over his order restricting mail-in ballot drop-off locations.
Many of these cases are still pending, while new ones will surely be filed after Election Day. All of this election litigation is bad for our country, says Joseph A. Morris, Chairman of the Heartland Institute and former Assistant U.S. Attorney General. "Somehow we are managing to foul up one of the attributes of American democracy that has been its glory---the ability of Americans to conduct free, fair, and secret elections," he tells KTRH. "The only losers in all of this are the American people, and what has been the fabulous reputation of our democracy."
Morris believes decades-long efforts to expand early voting and mail-in voting have led to this point. "It's all based on this belief that the American people can't be trusted, let alone animated, to get up off their duffs and go vote on Election Day, so we have to make it very easy to spoon-feed them their ballots," he says. "We would be wise to think seriously in terms of returning the norms of Election Day to in-person voting, and getting closer to what we used to do successfully for decades, for centuries."